January 18, 2018
Marketing has evolved from catchy tunes and short announcements on radios or TV to digital messaging and links on emails, websites and social media. The scale of reach has also changed from local to global. Today, we have over 5000 marketing technology solutions and applications to help us gather data and reach millions of people online.The rules for marketing are constantly evolving, pushing publishers and brands to come up with newer ways to get their message across. Building trust with consumers is near to impossible, when you are racing with thousands of brands offering the same thing you are. Whether you are an online retailer, newspaper or a fortune 500 company, there are essential marketing strategies to always keep in mind:
Know your customer
All of us have new year resolutions and every year we reevaluate our habits and lifestyles. Actually 41% of us make a decision to change something or add a new habit in our lives. This means that about half of your customer base are looking for an improved or new way to do a task or habit every year. It is important to take a look at your customer habits regularly and aim to refresh your communication every year.
Don’t assume what your customers are thinking but build a system to connect with and survey your customers on a regular basis. 52% of organizations say that they rely on educated guesses or gut feelings to make decisions based on their data. This may result from the fact that 39% cannot confirm that their data is fresh. Schedule a quarterly time to read through and evaluate the information gathered from your website or social media outlets. Look beyond the answers and create customer personas to help prioritize the communication.
Improve your social media accounts
Success in any type of activity requires consistency and repetition. This includes managing your social media accounts. Currenly about 54% of B2B marketers said they’ve generated leads from social media, with nearly half (44%) of all B2B relevant leads coming from LinkedIn. Simplifying the process by automating your posting capabilities will increase your reach. One of the first steps is to make your profile photos consistent across all your live social channels. You can then use this as your branding guide for any new accounts you engage in.
Another important step is to insert your popular SEO keywords in your social media profiles by integrating them into your company bio, photo names and even your job descriptions. This will keep your communication more consistent and help in organic search results. Do not forget to untag your handle or delete old posts that are no longer relevant.
Build your reputation and trust by adding endorsements or pin positive posts to the top of your account feeds. You can also use this to promote services your current clients love or share important company updates, ensuring that all your social touchpoints communicate the same information. It is also very important to test and verify all the links included in all your posts and profiles. In this way your social sites correctly direct your traffic to your funnels.
Have a master plan
Whenever we start any new project or task, we consider the timeline, budget, materials and parts needed to succeed. Without a plan, many projects do not succeed. Streamlining the plan is very important or it will miss the mark.
There are many goals a plan can focus on, so we recommend shifting your objectives on 3 main targets that will help make the most impact. They have to capture your company goals and also help provide direction to your social media strategies. According to a research conducted, the top 3 goals companies have when engaging in social media are brand awareness (85%), followed by community engagement (71%) and content distribution (61%). While the top 3 company challenges face are driving traffic to their website (58%), followed by generating leads (49%) and defining what to measure (42%). The most effective way to communicate your plan is to have an additional social media budget in place for boosting important posts or announcements, as well as promotion through platform ads.
Essentially, social media accounts are an additional tool that will help measure how you will accomplish and measure your goals success. However, your social media plan will help you find your voice and tone by coordinating what, when and how often content needs to be shared, and always testing to find that sweet spot.
Go the extra mile
Every day more customers are learning the importance of doing research before buying products or services. This means your online presence and social media accounts will inevitably be a part of their research. Your online accounts will their source of understanding your brand by monitoring how you interact with others.
This might not be a surprise, but 90% of consumers read online reviews before visiting a business and of them, 84% trust online reviews as much as a personal recommendation. Comments and reviews online now make or break a brand. Customer support departments are more important than ever and choosing the right employee is also very vital to your success.
Some timeless qualities in going the extra mile include listening, empathizing, apologizing, responding in real time. If you receive complaints on social media, respond by asking them to contact you via direct message and make sure you are already investigating the issue. Live chats on Twitter or adding a customer feedback tab on Facebook also help with this. Do not just try to take them offline but offer a more direct and personal communication option. On the other hand if you get positive posts, add extra delight by offering them account perks or incentives. Do not forget to gather the data on social media accounts and make good use by noting possible new features to consider or taking out services that are causing more harm than delight.
Ultimately, social media complements all the background work that your company performs day in day out. It should not be a secondary communication plan, but should be considered one of the main ingredients for your marketing success. By being focused and planned in your approach to tackle the online social hurdles, your brand can stand out. Cultivate a marketing and social culture that will not gain clicks and followers but loyal promoters online.